I have a confession to make.
I am a murderer.
If it has leaves and flowers and lives in soil, I will kill it. I’m pretty sure I get this trait from my mother. She has long stood by the creed that the only thing she can keep alive is an ivy, and that’s pretty much true. I don’t know how many poor innocent house plants I have seen meet an early demise in my life, but you better believe my mom can grow the biggest, prettiest, greenest ivies this side of the Rio Grande.
I, on the other hand, apparently can not manage to keep even ivy alive. Despite knowing this fact about myself, a few months ago, I was at the grocery store and I saw these cute little pots that came with different vegetable seeds. They were cheap and cute, so I bought two of them, tomato and peppers, on a whim. I took them home, opened up the package, followed the directions, and set them out in the sunlight.
I watered those suckers faithfully and after about a week, cute little sprigs began popping up. It was definitely a testament to the determination I had set forth to ensure that I would keep these two little plants alive. Twice a day, I continued to peek in on the plants until they outgrew their cute little clay pots and I was forced to find alternate homes for them.
Now, anyone that knows me knows that I have this fascination with naming things. I even name things that belong to different people, ask “the boy”, he refused to name his cars, so I named them for him. If you don’t want me to name your possessions, name them yourself, plain and simple. Anyways, back to the point, for two whole months I refused to name these plants for fear that it would just jinx them and then I would have more reason to be genuinely sad when the inevitable happened. It’s far easier to mourn the loss of your tomato plant than it is your “dear tomato plant, Ishmael.”
Two days ago, I finally broke down and gave them names, the tomato plant I named Rodney, and the pepper plant I named Carlos. Rodney and Carlos, good, strong, masculine names that can withstand any disaster.
Two days ago, Rodney had one tiny little bloom that would soon become a full grown tomato.
Two days ago, Rodney and Carlos basked in the sun and slurped up the water I poured upon their roots.
Two days ago, Rodney and Carlos were the happiest plants on the face of the planet.
This morning, Rodney and Carlos were dead.
And I don’t just mean dead, I mean they had turned so brown and dry that their leaves were crumbling and flying off in the breeze DEAD.
I sighed when I saw the devastation, I have no idea how they died that quickly and drastically, I did nothing different…yes, it’s been ridiculously hot and sunny, but it’s been that way for awhile now, why did they choose last night to die? Were they waiting for me to name them before they could die in peace? Had Rodney and Carlos been struggling to stay alive all this time and I had been so blissful I had failed to see it?
It took some time, but I finally got over the death of my dear friends. Until I stepped out my back door this evening to see a giant 6 foot tall weed staring back at me. A plant (if you can call it that) that received no attention from me whatsoever, the only reason I hadn’t knocked it down was purely based on my curiosity to see just how tall it would grow.
I couldn’t take it, that weed never stood a chance. I kicked and pulled at it for ten minutes until it finally gave up and let go. I ripped it up by the roots screaming “This is for Rodney and Carlos!”
And I wonder why my friends never invite me to go places with them anymore….